How much dark matter is there?

We say there's five times as much dark matter as regular matter - let's think about how much that actually is.
14 May 2019

Interview with 

Ben McAllister


The Milky Way galaxy.


We talk about the dark matter being five times as abundant as regular matter, but that can be a little hard to comprehend. Ben McAllister has prepared a little breather from all this hard science, to help us wrap our minds around it...

Ben - That sound you’re hearing right now, focus on it. Let the loudness of that sound represent the amount of regular matter in the Universe - the stuff that makes people, planets, stars etc. Now, do you hear that low sound slowly fading up? That sound represents the amount of dark matter. Not quite there yet, hang on. There we are. Hear how it swallows up the regular matter? We’re sitting in a sea of this stuff all the time. Let’s just listen for a minute.

Chris - Quite relaxing to listen to! We’re pretty sure dark matter is made of unknown particles that don’t interact with each other, and now we’re going to learn about two of the best candidates for those particles are, and how we’re trying to detect them.


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